Viera resident to play tennis in Senior Games


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Local doubles players Russ Reinhard, left, and Viera's Dave Bonnar qualified for the 2017 Senior Games tennis tournament that will take place in June in Birmingham, Ala.

photo courtesy Dave Bonner

Viera’s Dave Bonnar and his doubles partner, Russ Reinhard, have developed good communication skills during the past five years of playing together in the Space Coast League. 

Now, the two men are heading back to the National Senior Games for the second time after qualifying at a tournament held in Tarpon Springs in December. 

The Samford University Tennis Complex in Birmingham, Ala. will be the host site for their competition, which will run from June 3 to 6. 

Bonnar, 82, and Reinhard, 84, will play in the men’s doubles 80-plus division, which is one of nine age divisions in the tennis portion of the competition. 

The Senior Games, which are held every two years, will run from June 2 to 15. It will feature competition in 19 different sports, including tennis, pickleball, track and field, archery, horseshoes, volleyball, basketball and shuffleboard. Judo will be a demonstration sport this year. 

Bonnar and Reinhard took part in the 2015 games, which were held in Minnesota. They finished sixth out of 14 teams. 

Without knowing which teams will show up for this year’s tournament, Bonnar said it’s hard to predict how well he and Reinhard will fare, though he did say they are going to Birmingham to “have fun” and compete the best they can. 

The two men met while playing for the Space Coast League in Rockledge. They play on two teams. Bonnar is the team captain of both, while Reinhard serves as the co-captain. 

Through the years, the duo have developed a strong communicative bond – knowing what shots each man can or cannot hit, whether their stronger side is on the forehand or backhand and whether or not they prefer to play up at the net or back on the baseline. 

“It’s teamwork,” Bonnar said. “It’s part of the communication when you play doubles.”